Soundsmith Helios Moving Iron Phono Cartridge
Medium-Output Soundsmith Helios Moving-Iron Phono Cartridge Yields Reference Performance: Cactus-Spine Design Among Innovations Responsible for Incredible Analog Sound
U.S.A.-Made Soundsmith Helios Moving-Iron Phono Cartridge Tailored for Preamplifiers With 48dB-54dB Gain, Offers Many Advantages Over MM and MC Models
Analog playback and emotional connections to music reach transformative peaks with the reference-level Soundsmith Helios moving-iron phono cartridge. This U.S.A.-made masterwork removes any concern about overloading your system with a high-output MM cartridge or any need to turn up the volume with a low-output MC model. Named after the sun goddess Helios, daughter of Hyperion, and featuring a unique cactus-spine construction, Helios performs like a champion with preamplifiers that utilize a 48dB-54dB gain structure. Able to effortlessly mine tiny nuances, terrific detail, and tremendous warmth from your vinyl LPs, this moderate output cartridge boasts the same stunning performance as its high- and low-output siblings. Install Helios on your 'table and immediately experience new analog life and expectations-defying playback.
Used by High-End Manufacturers, Industry-Leading 10-Year Warranty
Due to its unique design, Helios provides a superbly detailed performance like no other cartridge. It also lacks the harsh characteristics that plague many so-called "detailed" cartridges. The sound is unusually natural and musical, which is why many audio manufacturers demand this cartridge at audio shows to showcase their equipment in the best-possible manner. Helios also boasts the absolute best warranty in the industry: A 10-year warranty to the original owner, including diamond tip replacements as often as needed. This makes the "high-priced" Helios actually one of the biggest bargains in high-end cartridges.
Medium-Output Design Works Wonders on Medium-to-High-Mass Arms
Soundsmith's medium-output range of cartridges addresses the needs of "fixed gain" preamplifiers that require a 1.1mV output design—or, preamp designs that avoid the use of a step-up transformer. Whereas Soundsmith Hyperion requires a 470-ohm load and 63dB of gain, Helios needs a 1500-ohm to 47k-Ohm load and 48-54dB of gain. Helios is a low-compliance design and will work marvelously on almost all medium-to-high-mass arms. It is completely based on Soundsmith's flagship moving-iron cartridge, Hyperion, and boasts some of the most important developments in cartridge research and design of the past 40 years.
Innovative Cactus-Spine Cantilever Offers Terrific Benefits
Having invented the cactus-spine cantilever, Soundsmith founder Peter Ledermann then developed the means to reduce the internal moving mass of Helios by an incredible factor of eight times less than any moving-coil design. He then found internal methods of correctly getting the "stored energy" (inertia) moved through the cartridge body, allowing the tonearm to damp out unwanted reflected energy that would otherwise go back down the cantilever and cause stylus jitter. These innovations, among many others, resulted in the Helios/Hyperion design becoming one of the industry's most heralded and highly acclaimed cartridges.
Superb Rigidity and Stability Plus Ultimate Internal Damping
The cactus spine offers the most desirable properties that can grace a cantilever, namely, a naturally tapered shape, stacked columnar fibers, and desiccated resin. Consequently, the spine is extremely rigid, tremendously strong, and wonderfully stable while possessing the exact internal damping other cantilevers lack. Helios is available with either Contact Line (CL) or Optimized Contour Contact Line (OC-CL) styli and has a compliance of 10 µm/mN, making it ideal for medium-to-high-mass arms.
Advantages of Soundsmith Moving-Iron Cartridges
Enjoy the best of both worlds: Soundsmith’s moving-iron cartridges encompass the advantages of moving-coil and moving-magnet designs while simultaneously lessening or eliminating the respective approaches’ deficiencies. Boasting extraordinary tracking abilities that let them effortlessly sail through complex musical passages, a warm and detailed character, exceptional transient response, and a full sound that completes entire notes and finishes instrumental structures, Soundsmith models exude natural musicality and high-end design. Built here in the U.S., and outfitted with either aluminum or ruby cantilevers, we guarantee you’ll love your new Soundsmith the moment it hits your favorite record’s grooves.
Now available from Soundsmith Designer Peter Ledermann's DirectGrace Records, Recordings to Rescue Children:
Elio Villafranca's Flower By the Dry River.